The HSE feared losing public confidence over a flaw in the Covid-19 tracking app that was draining the batteries of some mobile phones.
Internal emails reveal how 12,000 people had deleted the app within a matter of hours of the problem first being reported.
At one stage, the loss of users was down by more than 83,000, according to records released in response to a Freedom of Information request.
The development team working on a fix were told it was needed “ASAP” and that time sensitivity on solving the problem was key.
One email said: “We’re back into a work week tomorrow and people will not be able to survive without a phone; the risk is that we lose public confidence and start seeing high rates of deletion.”
Developers were also worried that fixing the issue might create new problems but were “sprinting” to push out an update for the app.
An email sent from Google to the HSE said: “This issue is our highest priority – we’ve been sprinting on a fix that we can push out as fast as possible without creating risk of inadvertently making things worse.”
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe was forced into a u-turn over rules on a pandemic wage subsidy scheme after being warned an orchestrated campaign was likely to “undermine” him in the run-up to the budget.
One of the country’s most senior civil servants admitted backing down on changes to the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme would be a “bad signal” but that the department would eventually be forced to “give in”.
The Department of Finance was particularly worried it would end up the subject of publicity that would “undermine him [Minister Donohoe] in the run into the Budget”.
The minister had been the subject of a campaign from TDs and business interests over the exclusion of so-called ‘proprietary directors’ from the terms of the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS).
The Irish Freedom Party was forced to pay back a €101 donation but they claim the contribution was made deliberately to force an investigation under electoral laws.
Party treasurer Michael Leahy said they had asked for the money to be given to charity and that they still don’t know exactly who made the “mischievous” donation.
The saga began in May 2019 when the Standards in Public Office Commission (SIPO) made contact with the party saying they were investigating a payment the party had received.
“The Commission has been made aware that a donation of more than €100 has recently been made to the Irexit Freedom Party,” said an email, released under FOI.
In response, party director of finance Michael Leahy said they had received five donations that exceeded €100 but that none “constitute a prohibited donation”.
In a later email exchange, Mr Leahy said they had received one specific donation of €101.
He wrote: “I assume this donation was sent mischievously and I assume it was notified to you by the parties who sent it to us with a view to putting us in a situation where we would have a legal requirement to register as a third party.”
Child and family agency Tusla expressed serious concerns over whether it would be able to bring itself into line with recommendations from the Data Protection Commissioner following a series of serious data breaches.
The agency was levied with a €75,000 fine in May this year after personal details of three vulnerable children were disclosed to unauthorised parties, including in one case to an alleged abuser.
Internal records show how the organisation was struggling to deal with data protection issues and their chief executive Bernard Gloster warned the Tusla board they would struggle to achieve compliance.
In a note to the board, Mr Gloster wrote: “While a task force across the organisation has been established to pursue the implementation agenda, I remain concerned at capacity and ability in respect of achievement.”